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Re: Now:Power/Generators (Was: Re[2]: telehouse - 25 broadway)

  • From: George Michaelson
  • Date: Sun Sep 16 20:37:44 2001

To add to the confusion, in UK english Kerosene is a synonym for Paraffin,
but Paraffin is a *group* of compounds, so named because of their lack (par)
of affin(ity) for other substances. A group can't be a synonym for a single
instance thus the two terms are not mutually interchangable.

Paraffin ranges from wax to near-gases at room temperatures. Kerosene, or
what Aussies call Kero' is liquid, but volatile at room temperature. 

Paraffin also includes substances taken as a laxative. Hence the joke in
'three men in a boat' about not taking Paraffin in a boat again, unless prone
to a sore tummy (they spill the stove fuel all over the food). If you go asking
for Paraffin in the UK, be specific about what its for! You get one kind in
small glass bottles at the chemist (== pharmacist) and the other kind dyed
blue or pink in metal cans from the ironmongers. Don't get me started on
what a monger is, thats a whole another can of worms. and why does an Iron
monger sell patently non-iron fluids?

Dero's Drink Kero. I suspect this is much like Bums drinking Drano. Metho is
both better and worse, it does get you drunk, but it is methanol and so leads
to blindness. not all Kerosene is methanol. Mind you, the smell of somebody
who has been drinking meths I would walk a country mile to avoid. Ah, memories
of childhood. Its amazing how a bit of social engineering like legalizing 
off-racecourse gambling cast an entire generation of pre- and post-WWII spivs
on the dustheap, hence the volumes of metho-drinkers walking the streets of
Edinburgh who used to be bookies runners.

Paraffin lamps, and diesel or 'oil' engines which use non-sparkplug ingnition
often need pre-heating. It used to be a common sight to see somebody using
metho to light a blowlamp (the metho heats the tube to vapourize
the paraffin, so it will ignite at the jet), then use the blowlamp to pre-heat
the heavy oil in the oil-engine, then manually turn the engine to start the
cycle. Oil engines run slow, like donkey engines in a texas oilfield, one thump
a second or less! Talk about a three stage bootstrap.

George Michaelson       |  APNIC
Email: [email protected]    |  PO Box 2131 Milton QLD 4064
Phone: +61 7 3367 0490  |  Australia
  Fax: +61 7 3367 0482  |